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Wal-Mart and The Glass Ceiling Investigating and Proving Gender Discrimination. February 2004. Wal-Mart Basics. Founded by Sam Walton Headquarters in Bentonville, AR Largest Retailer in the World Largest Private Employer in U.S. $244.6 billion in sales; $6 billion profit in 2003.

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Wal mart and the glass ceiling investigating and proving gender discrimination

Wal-Mart and The Glass CeilingInvestigating and Proving Gender Discrimination

February 2004


Wal mart basics
Wal-Mart Basics

  • Founded by Sam Walton

  • Headquarters in Bentonville, AR

  • Largest Retailer in the World

  • Largest Private Employer in U.S.

  • $244.6 billion in sales; $6 billion profit in 2003





The promotion process getting into management training
The Promotion Process CompetitorsGetting Into Management Training

  • No Posting of Openings

  • No Application

  • No Set Selection Criteria

  • No Information on Management Jobs or Qualifications

  • “Tap on the Shoulder”


Were women as a group less qualified for management
Were Women as a Group Less Qualified for Management ? Competitors

  • No education requirement

  • No prior experience required

  • Higher Average Performance Ratings


What the women told us about promotion
What the Women Told Us About Promotion. .. Competitors

  • No Information About How to Apply

  • Shifting Requirements and Excuses

  • Relocation Requirement – Real or A Pretext?

  • Sexist Attitudes




Gender based pay disparities
Gender-Based CompetitorsPay Disparities

Average Annual Earnings **

In 2001

*Full-time

**Including bonuses

Data: Richard Drogin


Wal mart s side of the story
Wal-Mart’s Side of the Story Competitors

  • No Uniform National Practice

  • Women Not Interested in Management Positions

    • Long and Unpredictable Hours

  • Pay Differences are Very Small

  • Have Made Efforts to Improve Diversity

  • Women Are Happy at Wal-Mart

  • Case is Just Too Big


Uniformity and central control

Every Store Looks and Operates Identically Competitors

Same Jobs and Job Hierarchy

Wal-Mart Cheer at Daily Store Meetings

Wal-Mart Culture – 3 Basic Beliefs

All personnel policies from Bentonville

24/7 Real Time Electronic Connection

Weekly and Daily Reports and Store Visits

Heat and Music

Uniformity and Central Control


Was the alleged discrimination intentional
Was The Alleged Discrimination Intentional? Competitors

  • Internal Studies of Pay and Promotion Rates by Gender

  • Diversity Consultant

  • Benchmarking Against Competitors

  • Warnings from the Executive Vice President of Human Resources

  • Knew that Relocation Requirement Had An Adverse Impact on Women





Stay tuned
Stay Tuned Board of Directors

  • Dukes v. Wal-Mart Stores, Northern District of California

  • Class Certification Motion Pending

  • www.walmartclass.com


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